Priyanka politics: With husband Robert on way to ED office in Jaipur.

Priyanka politics: With husband Robert on way to ED office in Jaipur.

Priyanka flies off to Jaipur after Lucknow roadshow to escort husband to ED office

After three days of questioning in Delhi, Vadra hauled over to ED office in Jaipur

Agency Report | Jaipur/Lucknow | 12 February, 2019 | 08:50 PM

It’s increasingly clear that Priyanka Gandhi Vadra has decided to make political capital out of her husband Robert Vadra’s sudden spike in being questioned by the government’s agencies related to many cases pending for years. In fact, Priyanka Gandhi assumed charge of Congress general secretary after dropping her husband Robert Vadra at the ED office in Delhi last week where he was questioned. She again made it a point to fly out of Lucknow where she was visiting for the first time after being named party in-charge of eastern UP. The Gandhi sibling hopped over to Jaipur to be seen dropping off her husband once again at the ED office.

Robert Vadra, husband of Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, and his mother Maureen Vadra on Tuesday arrived at the Enforcement Directorate (ED) office in Jaipur for questioning in connection with a money laundering case involving a Bikaner land deal in Rajasthan.

Vadra was accompanied by his wife Priyanka Gandhi, who was recently appointed as Congress’ in-charge for eastern Uttar Pradesh. They reached the ED office around 10.40 a.m.

The 47-year-old sister of Congress President Rahul Gandhi left the premises after dropping Vadra and his mother. She had flown in to Rajasthan after a hectic roadshow in Uttar Pradesh capital Lucknow late on Monday.

According to Congress sources, Priyanka Gandhi left for Lucknow again, as there were meetings lined up at the party office for her.

Robert Vadra had reached the Rajasthan capital on Monday afternoon along with his mother.

As soon as the Vadra family reached the ED office, a few Congress workers standing outside started raising slogans ‘Chowkidaar chor hai’.

The questioning of Vadra in the Bikaner land deal case comes after the Rajasthan High Court directed the mother and son to appear before the ED officials in connection with the case on January 21.

Vadra and his mother are partners in the Skylight Hospitality LLP, the company probed by the ED in a money laundering case registered in 2015.

The case was filed by the Rajasthan government on complaints made by the Bikaner tehsil office about alleged forgery in the land allotment. The alleged scam relates to 275 acres of land in the Kolayat sub-division.

Vadra and his mother’s statements shall be recorded under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

This is for the first time that the two were being questioned by the ED officials in the Bikaner land deal case.

Earlier, Vadra was questioned for over 24 hours in a separate money laundering case on Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday in Delhi.
Ahead of deposing in front of the Enforcement Directorate (ED), Robert Vadra wrote an emotional Facebook post expressing his firm belief in God which will help him tide over tough times ahead.

“Not understanding the lows of this vindictive government to be harassing a senior citizen,” Vadra said, describing how his mother had lost her daughter in a car crash, her ailing son to diabetes, and her husband as well.

“Three deaths and all I did was to ask her to spend time with me in my office, so I could look after her and we both could grieve on our losses,” the 50-year-old businessman said, adding that now his mother was paying the price of “spending time in my office” by “being accused, maligned and called to be interrogated”.

Vadra was earlier interrogated for three days in the ED headquarters in Delhi for over 24 hours in a separate money laundering case on Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday.

“If there was any issue or any illegality, which was found by the government, why did it take them four years and eight months to call me a month before campaigning begins for the general elections,” said the husband of Priyanka Gandhi, who was launched as the Congress General Secretary in charge of Uttar Pradesh east just days back.

“Do they think people in India do not view it as an election gimmick?!” said Vadra, whose wife accompanied him to the Jaipur ED office earlier in the day before leaving for Uttar Pradesh to meet party workers, after a roadshow in Lucknow on Monday.

Vadra said: “I always have adhered to rules and overall being a disciplined person, I have the ability to sustain any amount of hours of questioning and having nothing to hide, I will answer every question with respect n dignity.

“This too shall pass and will make me stronger.”

He ended his post with: “What goes around comes around. God is with us.”
Priyanka Gandhi Vadra landed in Jaipur on Monday night to accompany her husband to the Enforcement Directorate (ED) office on Tuesday.

Robert Vadra was already in Jaipur when Priyanka Gandhi, who had carried out a road show in Lucknow with her brother and other leaders in her first visit to the state after being appointed party incharge for East UP, reached there. He had reached the Rajasthan capital in the afternoon along with his mother Maureen Vadra.

Priyanka Gandhi was to address the party workers at the Congress’s Mall Avenue office after Rahul Gandhi but she chose not to. An interaction with the media was also aborted last minute.

She was slated to spend the night and three more days in Lucknow but instead she flew to Jaipur.

According to sources, Vadra will have to answer 55 questions as being drafted by the Directorate.

Last week in Delhi, Vadra was subjected to intense interrogation by the ED in connection with a money laundering probe against him for his alleged role in procuring assets abroad in an illegal manner.

The fresh summon by the ED comes after the Rajasthan High Court directed Vadra and his mother to cooperate with the ED, as Vadra did not report to the agency even after being sent three summons in the land scam case earlier.

Vadra and his mother’s statements shall be recorded under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on the second day of her Uttar Pradesh visit met party workers from various constituencies falling under eastern UP and took feedback from them about the ground situation, a senior party leader said on Tuesday.

Having cut short her visit on Monday soon after the road show, to fly to Jaipur to be with her husband Robert Vadra, being questioned about a land deal by the Enforcement Directorate, Priyanka arrived in the state capital shortly after noon and drove straight to the Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee (UPCC) office, where she had lunch with select party leaders and met party workers.

Sources say Priyanka Gandhi was closeted with a small team of UPCC office during her stay in Lucknow after which she met party leaders from various districts. Aware that the party’s organisational structure was weak and not geared to take on the BJP cadre, she is learnt to be focussed on the “goodwill” that the grand old party still enjoys in many pockets.

“To start with she met many party workers who have been slogging it on the ground in very tough and challenging conditions over the past three decades,” a senior party leader said, adding the morale of party workers was very high and that they hoped they would be battle-ready very soon.

On Monday, she had, along with brother and Congress President Rahul Gandhi and Jyotiraditya Scindia, led a successful road show in the state capital. (IANS)